New Delhi: Amid the national capital registering a massive rise in Coronavirus cases on a daily basis, Delhi deputy cheif minister Manish Sisodia on Friday announced that the schools in the city will remain shut till July 31. “Reopening schools is not merely a technical work, rather, it is a creative work that would give schools a new and bigger role. Schools will continue to be closed in Delhi till July 31,” Sisodia said. Also Read - World Zoonoses Day 2020: What is Zoonosis And How Does The Infectious Disease Spread

Sisodia, who is also the Education Minister, made the announcement after a meeting with officials of the Directorate of Education (DoE) on how to reopen schools. Also Read - Mitigate Airborne Spread of COVID-19, 239 Scientists Urge WHO

Sisodia and his team also received various suggestions on changing approaches to learning and reopening of classes in Delhi schools. Also Read - With 1379 Cases in 24 Hours, COVID-19 Tally in Delhi Crosses 1 Lakh-mark; Centre Says Positivity Rate Declines | Key Points

“Let us design a plan to reopen schools in a way that would prepare our students to adjust to the new circumstances and not fear them. It would help our students to learn to live with corona,” Sisodia said.

One of the suggestions in the meeting was that primary classes should be held once or twice in a week with a strength of 12-15 students in a class.

It was proposed that classes can be conducted on alternate days for students of classes 3 to 5.

Along the same lines, conducting classes once or twice a week for students of classes 6 to 8 was suggested. It was also proposed at the meeting to conduct classes for three days in a week.

For classes 9 and 10, it was suggested to the Education Minister that classes should be taken in very small groups once or twice a week. Some members were of the view that Class 10 students should have classes every day.

It was suggested during the meeting that classes of 11 and 12 should be conducted on alternate days and online classes should be carried on remaining days.

But it was strongly agreed that online classes should not be withdrawn and online library facilities should also continue like before. Videos by the Khan Academy on different subjects for easy learning and understanding of students should also continue.

Continuing with the online classes wherever possible, carrying proper sanitisation work in classrooms, distributing masks to students, thermal screening of every student at the school entrance gate, and reduction of the syllabus were some of the major suggestions given at the meeting.

DoE officials also stressed on reducing the syllabus by 30 to 50 per cent to reduce the burden of the already stressed-out students. There was also a suggestion to ban students’ mass activity and crowding.

Some also suggested that only 3 to 4 hours of classes should be conducted per day.

Meanwhile, Delhi has over 73,000 Coronavirus cases. The death toll due to the disease is over 2,400. Since last Thursday, the case count in the city has touched or breached the 3,000-mark on six out of seven days.

With 3,788 COVID-19 cases reported on Wednesday, Delhi had overtaken Mumbai as the city with the highest number of cases.

(With agency inputs)